We all love stacking our refrigerators with the best sausages, but no one likes keeping track of how old each sausage is. So how do you protect your precious gut from devouring a bad sausage? It’s simple. You just have to be careful with what you eat. If you aren’t sure about whether or not your favorite sausage is fit for consumption, there are always ways to check and prevent potential food poisoning.
It’s as easy as starting off by checking the expiration date on the package. If that isn’t enough, you can always check out its smell, texture, and appearance. Watch out for a strong, pungent, and nasty odor, a slimy texture, or a non-uniform color. If you come across any of these, it’s better to toss the sausage out in the trash can.
Through this article, I’ll tell you a few ways through which you can tell if your sausage has passed its point of consumption. I will discuss how you can store your sausages efficiently and preserve their life. You will also come to know about the possible reactions your body can have after eating a rotten sausage.
Basic Signs Of A Spoiled Sausage
There are various ways by which one can check for spoilage. Small signs like a change in smell, appearance, and texture can give out a lot. However, this is not a tough task. You can do it easily at home. To check for any signs of spoilage, you just need to follow a few simple steps.
1. Try Smelling The Sausage
If you notice a pungent, nasty, or particularly strong odor, it’s an indication that your sausage has gone bad. Generally, raw meat is odorless, so it’s a sign of spoilage if you come across any fetid odor.
2. Inspecting The Appearance and Texture
Fresh meat is firm and cohesive. It’s tender, and if you prick it, it will bounce back. But if, instead, your sausage has a slimy coat on top of it, which wouldn’t go away even after you’ve cooked it, it will be safe to bet that your sausage is rotten.
3. Checking The Colour
When sausage is cooked, it’s uniformly colored and is without any spots. The easiest way to check for any spoilage will be if you spot any grey discoloration on your sausage, especially around the ends. But if there is no evident grey discoloration, there are other ways to check for spoilage too. If the outside color of your sausage is not uniform and has formed lines and spots, your sausage is spoiled.
4. Checking The Dates
We discussed a few general ways of checking for spoilage. But at times, just our mere nose or eyes might not be able to spot some signs that indicate the meat is rotten. The sausages can go bad without any apparent signs. In that case, it’s crucial to check for expiration dates.
There could be a manifestation of bacteria on the sausage that is invisible to the naked eye. To protect yourself from consuming these disease-causing pathogens, check for the expiration date and not consume any meat that has passed its expiry.
Brown Sausage – Good or Bad?
Sausages are preferred when they are of pink or red color as it indicates the freshness of the meat. However, if your sausage has turned brown, it could mean that it’s on the verge of getting spoiled. The discoloration could be a result of exposure of the sausage to oxygen, as a result of which it is starting to dry out. This doesn’t imply that the sausage is completely unfit for consumption but could indicate a compromised taste.
Right Way To Store The Sausage
Storing the sausage in the right way is very crucial. It helps retain the quality and taste of the sausage. It also decides the amount of time for which the sausage will survive. When it comes to storing sausages, a simple ground rule is to be followed – Wrap and Refrigerate
Step 1 – Wrap
Separate your sausages into various portions and tightly wrap each portion in plastic film wrap; a butcher paper or even a zip lock bag could work. The goal here is to squeeze out as much air as possible. It’s the air in packaging that shortens the life of the sausages. It also causes freezer burns. Another way is to seal the sausages in a vacuum-style food sealer bag. It automatically pumps out all the air from the packaging.
Step 2 – Over Wrap
This is an optional step. But following through with it will lead to safer storage and extended life of the sausages. Double wrap the sausages with either an aluminum foil or a second layer of plastic wrap. You can label and date the exterior packaging for your future reference.
Step 3 – Refrigerate
Refrigeration of sausages is crucial for extending their life and preventing it from going bad. Make sure that instead of stacking the packages one over the other, you lay them uniformly to ensure proper and efficient cooling. It is important to refrigerate the sausages as soon as possible to retain the meat quality for a longer period. The sausages can remain fit for consumption for a year but will taste best if consumed within four to six months.
There are other ways of storing sausages, too, like pickling and dry-curing them.
Effects Of Eating A Spoiled Sausage
Eating a rotten sausage can have various consequences depending upon how spoiled it is and the immunity, gut health, and age of the person consuming it. If the sausage has just passed its expiration date and has not formed any harmful bacterial manifestations, chances are you’ll be fine with just a minor stomach ache.
But if your stomach is sensitive, it can lead to food poisoning too, symptoms for which will include vomiting, nausea, stomach ache, etc. If the symptoms are severe, like high fever and constant vomiting, you should consult a doctor. For some people, it might also take a few days for any symptoms to show at all.
However, if you’ve eaten a bad poultry sausage, then you can be in trouble. A bad poultry sausage can lead to salmonella and is the worst to consume when bad. So it’s always advised to be extra careful while consuming poultry sausages.
Other sausages, like a bad Beef or pork sausage, can lead to common symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea, stomach ache, etc., depending upon the degree of spoilage and the health of the individual consuming it. The best way to keep yourself healthy when consuming sausages is to take care of your stomach and stay hydrated.
With simple steps and a careful mind, you can make sure that the sausage you are eating is fit for consumption. It’s important to follow the right ways to store your meat and preserve it. Failing to do so has various health issues, which are better avoided. You can easily tell while sitting at home if your sausages are spoiled or not.